“After the Verdict” went to air last night, collecting a total overnight audience of 653,000.

The drama tells the story of four very different Australians who have just completed jury duty on a high-profile murder trial, but are having second thoughts back in the real world. They then take the law into their own hands and investigate the murder themselves, kicking off a high-stakes game of cat and mouse with secrets, betrayal, blackmail and murder.

It stars Michelle Lim Davidson (“The Newsreader”), Lincoln Younes (“Doctor Doctor”), Tess Haubrich (“Wolf Creek”) and Magda Szubanski (“Kath and Kim”), with production from Subtext Pictures.

When the show was commissioned, with major production investment from Screen Australia, Andy Ryan, the Nine Network’s head of drama, said the show would be Australia’s guilty pleasure in 2022.

“With its stellar cast and outstanding creative team, “After the Verdict” is a fresh new spin on crime drama that will have audiences hooked from the first scene,” he added.

Its first episode on Wednesday night, had 409,000 metro viewers and 208,000 in the regions. A further 36,000 had watched on streaming platform 9Now by the time the Nine Network released its figures, taking its total to 653,000.

The Nine Network said this made the show the dominant timeslot winner, although the ABC’s “Shaun Micallef’s Mad as Hell” – which did partly cross over with “After the Verdict” – had 412,000.

Overall, the most popular entertainment program of the evening was “The Block” with a total of 1.177 million (749,000 metro, 320,000 regional and 108,000 on 9Now).